Cracks in concrete walls and floors are a common occurrence. Next time you are in your basement, take a look at the foundation walls and floors, you will most likely find a crack. Why? It is the nature of concrete.
Builders and homeowners contact us throughout the years to fix new and old foundations that have cracked. Some of these cracks leak and some do not. We have learned that there are two kinds of crack, ones that leak and ones that are going to leak. In New England, whether you are in Boston, Worcester, Manchester, Providence, Hartford, or Chelmsford, water enters the crack then freezes. This freezing will cause the crack to get wider every year and eventually allow water into your basement. Having a crack in the foundation wall is like have a window open and hoping that water will not come into the house.
CAUSES for CRACKS in BASEMENT WALLS
When a hole is cored through a wall for the installation of a sewer, electric or gas line, the wall is slightly weakened and can result in a crack. Foundation wall cracks are most often found at the corners of basement window. Another common area that foundation cracks are found is at beam pockets.
Basement walls, in most cases, are supported by footings. The footings are under the foundation walls. When the soils under the footing settle/compact the footing and/or wall can crack. There can be movement of the soils caused by earthquakes, blasting, and heavy equipment that can cause foundations walls or floors to crack. This settlement usually occurs within the first 1-3 years of the house being built.
When the soils under footings become oversaturated, the footings can settle and cause foundation wall cracks. When the soils next to the foundation oversaturate in the winter, they can freeze and put a great deal of force against the foundation. Most foundations are not built to withstand this excessive force and the foundation wall will crack.
There is a whole science to concrete. The pour of the concrete is affected by temperature, aggregate, mixture, and humidity. Since water is an integral part of the concrete mix, there is an inherent expansion and contraction of the concrete when it dries. With the expansion, contraction and evaporation of the water, the concrete can shrink and often foundation wall and floor cracks will appear.
If foundation cracks develop in your foundation, homeowners should seek the advice and expertise of a professional concrete repair contractor for a warrantied repair and to prevent water from entering their basement. Contact A-1 Foundation Crack Repair Inc. today and speak to a live basement waterproofing and foundation wall and floor crack repair professional.
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